Doesa widow receive 1/3 of an insurance payout on homestead if it is destroyed?

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Doesa widow receive 1/3 of an insurance payout on homestead if it is destroyed?

My father died without a Will leaving a wife and 3 kids. His widow (not our mother) lives in his home in TX. We understand she is entitled to a 1/3 life estate in his home with the remainder shared between my 2 siblings and myself. If we sell the home, with her permission, she gets 1/3 of the profit. Does the same apply to an insurance payout if the home is destroyed during her lifetime, even though my siblings and I pay the entire insurance premium?

Asked on June 28, 2011 under Real Estate Law, North Carolina

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

i am so sorry for your loss.  Hopefully the house is still standing and this is not an after the fact question.  The intestacy law that you refer to here is that of the state of Texas. I need to play devil's advocate here for a bit and pose some questions to you that will best be answered by an attorney in Texas familiar with the practicalities of probate and not just "the law."  So you are all 1/3 owners of 2/3 of the house.  Who is paying the gas and electric?  And the taxes?  And the water bill?  Besides the insurance for the house those are supposed to be split.  Okay maybe not for usage of the gas and electric but certainly the taxes. I do not think that paying the insurance premium would cancel out her inheritance.  You and your  siblings may be entitled to repayment of the insurance premiums at best - her share only.  Get help.  Good luck.


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